Should You Pay Attention to Peach?

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It’s gotten a generous amount of buzz over the last couple weeks across the interwebs, but what is this new messaging app that is apparently the next best thing? Peach. Cute name, basic interface and functionality. Seems simple enough, but you’re probably either rolling your eyes right now or shuddering at the thought of having to add another platform to your workload. “Chandler, do I really have to pay attention to this one?” The short answer is maybe, but read on to find out more. You could end up a full lap ahead of your competition in the higher ed world.

In a nutshell, Peach is a messaging app. Think along the lines of the seemingly millions of them out there. Yes, there’s yet another one trying to make a splash. It allows users to send simple messages to their friends who they add on the platform. Send text, pictures, and GIFs to your friends quickly on a clean interface. There isn’t a main stream on Peach like there is on Facebook or Twitter, so you won’t be inundated with posts you don’t want to see. It gives it a more intimate feel.

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There are three central sections – friends you follow, friends of friends, and your profile where you can see all of the posts you’ve sent. Your friends can see, comment and like your posts, just like on the other major platforms.

What’s different about Peach, and what it has to be banking on for its success, is its Magic Words feature. Whenever you type “GIF” for example, it will allow you to automatically search for and post a GIF. The intriguing part of the feature is that while there are plenty of commands that are well-known (draw, shout, move, etc), there are plenty left to be discovered.

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As it is, it’s hard for me to see a direct translation to the world of higher ed. Not sure there will be enough students willing to become friends with you to make it worth your while, but that was also the case with Snapchat. Peach says it “reads every review to make Peach better for you.” If it can stay around long enough to evolve and not become another casualty in the failed app cemetery (RIP, Meerkat), it very well could be an app you don’t want to ignore.

4 Ways To Use Periscope In Higher Education

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According to its site, over 40 years of video are watched every day. Twitter already acquired it earlier this year. It already has 10 million accounts in just over six months. Ok that may be impressive, but Chandler, another social media platform? Yes, and it’s poised to be the next wave of social. It’s Periscope – live streaming to the world straight from your phone.

Here are a few ways you can make use of Periscope in higher ed.

 

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Live demonstrations

The ease of using Periscope should make the process of creating video content less daunting. No need for expensive production crews or editing software. Just download and go. There are invariably plenty of students who need answers about something relating to your school, why not provide a live demo on how to register for classes, or a campus tour? Save the video afterwards to have it ready to share.

 

Share Breaking Updates

Everyone loves a good breaking story, and Periscope can help you create that experience in real-time. Celebrity sighting on campus? Prominent speaker coming to lecture? Headlining artist just arrive for the show that night? Maybe there’s a demonstration or protest in the quad? There are any number of events that would be great to capture live, but in all reality your students will be just as, if not, more excited to watch a stream telling them classes are cancelled because of the snow storm. Don’t be afraid to keep it simple.

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Behind the Scenes

Everyone loves to get an insider’s perspective and the app is perfect for just that. Think about streaming the commencement speaker’s pre-speech routine. Preparing the Homecoming festivities, or even a sneak peek of the team’s huddle or coach’s pre-game speech before the big game.

 

Acceptance Letters

The most exciting time for high schoolers. After months and even years of preparing for and applying to schools, the “acceptance letter” is what makes it all worth it. Why not add another dimension and live stream the process of printing and shipping the letters? Following the student handles beforehand and reminding them to tune in at the time of the stream can build more excitement than just receiving the letter in the mail.

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It’s barely over 6 months old, but its growth suggests it will be around for a while. If and when Twitter decides to make Periscope a regular feature of the platform, higher ed will need to be ready. Starting to integrate it into your social mix now can pay dividends in the future, and see your engagement increase in the present.

How To Use Snapchat In Higher Education

 

Check out the previous installments of our series on Snapchat and higher education here. And here.

By now you’ve heard all of the hoopla. 77% of college students use it daily, and 30% of US millennials use it regularly. But why does Snapchat matter for higher education? In short, engagement.

But the messages disappear! It’s a waste of time, right? Not so fast. A recent Facebook study found millennial teens consume information at a rate 2.5 times faster than their older counterparts. Messages seen for even 3 seconds are more likely to be recalled in this demographic – if that message is compelling enough.

By its very nature, Snapchat is a sharing machine. Since the messages disappear, users have an incentive to screenshot the images and share them with their friends and family. If you create interesting enough content, odds are it will be shared organically.

Here are a few ways you can use the app to your advantage.

Showcase Your School

With the Stories feature, you can showcase the most exciting experiences your school has to offer and give prospective students a glimpse of the college lifestyle on your campus. Think big sporting events from tailgate to post game, traditions (homecoming, etc), move-in days, orientation events, and anything else that sets your school apart. You could even consider allowing select students to use the account to take viewers through a day in the life of a student.

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Add A Custom Design

Snapchat allows you to create your own design and submit it for approval as a “geofilter.” These filters can be used by any user on your campus for all their followers to see. You can upload your basic logo, or create a fun design for students to use.

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Get Creative

Tennessee Wesleyan College even hosted a scavenger hunt through the app for prospective students at an orientation day. Each student who followed the TWC account could view the 5 clues the school sent on the whereabouts of the school mascot.

Acceptance Notifications

At the end of the enrollment cycle, you can create more anticipation and excitement for your accepted students by sending them a Snap. If you have their handle, a personalized message could go a long way in increasing your push-to-deposit campaign results. While I’m sure your acceptance letter looks stunning, adding a Snap can make the acceptance process that much better.

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Promote Contests and Events

Snapchat is also an effective promotional tool. Big event on campus? Add a Snap to your story to help promote it to your students. Classes cancelled? Let everyone know through a Snap. Weather warning? Snap it. You can even hold a contest.

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It’s instantaneous, personal, and mobile. It’s exactly where your audience lives. Get creative, send the right messages, and Snapchat can help your engagement numbers soar.

Bloomfield College Embraces Their Brand

bloomfield pubAs the A-Team’s Hannibal once said, “I love it when a plan comes together.” And it certainly has with our partnership with Bloomfield College.

Earlier this year, we partnered with Bloomfield to help them engage in a broad-scale branding project.Their goals were threefold: create a thoughtful brand that reflects the spirit of the College; generate pride and excitement within the College community; and roll the brand out in a way that will engage prospective students and their families.

We’re proud to say that the first phase of the brand launch is well under way and we could not be happier with the results! Bloomfield College is an innovative leader in coaching students and helping them develop both inside and outside of the classroom. Their brand, centered around the theme of helping students ‘write their own story’, captures the essence of their mission while focusing on their students, just as every member of their community does on a daily basis. We believe that’s why it is resonating so well on all levels.

Most exciting for us is working with a partner who ‘gets it’. Bloomfield College has embraced their new brand fully and enthusiastically. Together, we’ve refreshed their recruitment publications, developed a new website, re-launched their YouTube channel and completely revamped their tour program. Bloomfield College is taking the ball and running with it! Don’t take our word for it, read more about it in their alumni magazine here: http://www.bloomfield.edu/about-us/news/empowering-our-community.

Bloomfield College is going places and we’re glad to be along for the ride.

What’s The Trick to Improving Your Higher Education Search and Branding?

twgplus - higher education predictive modeling,brandAdd a Rapid Insight and TWG Plus partnership to your marketing toolkit.

Just yesterday, September 5th, 2013, we announced our partnership with Rapid Insight.

This alliance is a natural fit.  With Rapid Insight, we can provide the most interesting, clear and accessible higher education predictive modeling available.

I see this as an important step in the growth of TWG Plus and higher education marketing.  Once mutually exclusive, Branding and Search (Direct Marketing) are experiencing a convergence. From the ROI of Social Media to the analytics from LinkedIn University, higher ed gains new data tools to measure the path to Enrollment, but brand saliency and equity as well.

Yes, our partnership with Rapid Insight will provide sound target segmentation for email and print campaigns.  But that’s just the beginning. This insight will fuel collaboration amongst enrollment managers, brand managers and our creative teams that produce effective and beautiful design. Combine these tools with our digital campaign analytics from our Digital Viewbooks and Google Adwords and you have a recipe for a higher education marketing company that is fresh and ready for the next generation of students.

Hooray Data! Hooray Brands!